Peace Lily Leaves Turning Yellow and Brown – What to Do

Peace Lily

Are the dark green leaves of your peace lily plant starting to turn a concerning shade of yellow and brown? In general, peace lilies are easy to maintain but changes to a couple of environmental factors could cause the leaves to turn yellow and brown.

The Peace Lily is not Being Watered Correctly

Watering tends to be the primary culprit for houseplant leaves that turn yellow or brown. It could be a case of over-watering or under-watering. When you over-water a peace lily plant, the roots could suffocate as a result of the clogged soil, which reduces the plant’s ability to ‘breathe’.

Too little watering could also cause the peace lily plant leaves to gradually turn yellow and brown. Water is required for photosynthesis and for the movement of nutrients along the plant’s stem. Without enough water, a peace lily plant will start to wilt and the edges of the leaves may dry out and turn brown.

In addition to monitoring the watering frequency, pay attention to the type of water you are feeding the plant. Some areas may mainly offer ‘hard water’ via the tap. Hard water contains a high concentration of minerals like salt and bicarbonates which will build up in the soil up over time and prevent the roots from absorbing the necessary nutrients.

Humidity Level is Too Low

Peace lilies are tropical, evergreen plants so they do best in humid conditions. You may notice the leaves of the peace lily turning yellow and brown during certain times of the year, such as in the winter when dry heat is being blasted into the air by the heater.

If the humidity level gets too low then this may prevent the peace lily from blooming and also encourage the plant to sprout brown leaf tips. For peace lily plants, we recommend maintaining an indoor humidity of at least 50% or higher.

Not Enough or Too Much Sunlight

Peace lilies are known for being houseplants that can tolerate shade pretty well but that doesn’t mean they should be left in the dark all day long. The foliage of the plant still needs to get a bit of light to photosynthesize. It doesn’t have to natural sunlight. Artificial light can also work as long as it’s giving the plant the correct light wavelength.

Reversely, brown and yellow leaves of peace lily plants could also be caused by too much sunlight. Full sun conditions may cause issues like leaf scorching because the sudden change in exposure could be too much for the plant to handle.

We don’t recommend placing peace lily plants right next to the window, especially a south-facing one, as this would place the plant in the path of too much sunlight. Peace lilies thrive in partial sun conditions consisting of indirect light so we suggest placing it a few feet away from the window.